Act 1 - Scene 1
London. An ante-chamber in the KING'S palace.
Enter the ARCHBISHOP OF CANTERBURY, and the BISHOP OF ELY
My lord, I'll tell you; that self bill is urged,
Which in the eleventh year of the last king's reign
Was like, and
had indeed against us pass'd,
But that the scambling and unquiet time
Did push it out of farther question.
But how, my lord, shall we resist it now?
It must be thought on. If it pass against us,
We lose the better half of our possession:
For all the temporal
lands which men devout
By testament have given to the church
Would they strip from us; being valued
As much as would maintain, to the king's honour,
Full fifteen earls and fifteen hundred knights,
thousand and two hundred good esquires;
And, to relief of lazars and weak age,
Of indigent faint souls
past corporal toil.
A hundred almshouses right well supplied;
And to the coffers of the king beside,
pounds by the year: thus runs the bill.
This would drink deep.
'Twould drink the cup and all.
But what prevention?
The king is full of grace and fair regard.
And a true lover of the holy church.
The courses of his youth promised it not.
The breath no sooner left his father's body,
But that his wildness,
mortified in him,
Seem'd to die too; yea, at that very moment
Consideration, like an angel, came
the offending Adam out of him,
Leaving his body as a paradise,
To envelop and contain celestial spirits.
was such a sudden scholar made;
Never came reformation in a flood,
With such a heady currance, scouring
Nor never Hydra-headed wilfulness
So soon did lose his seat and all at once
As in this king.
We are blessed in the change.
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